You know it's going to be a banner day when it starts with the cat taking a dip in the toilet.
Siren the Cat is old and senile. Like many ancient humans, she has lucid days and crazy ones. On her not-so-good days, she's developed an interest in water. She tries to join me in the shower or the Grape in his bath. I thought her sudden penchant for hydration was harmless old lady behavior.
Until yesterday morning, when the Grape alerted me to her whereabouts and asked me whether he should flush.
I guess that's what I get for attempting to brush my teeth in the relative privacy of the other bathroom.
So I spent a good half hour bathing the cat, and an equal amount of time rehabilitating the bathroom from the cat's unscheduled ablutions. She reacted to all this attention by jolting into lucidity and panicking. By which I mean, she rocketed out of the bath and promptly shed at least half her hair on the freshly vacuumed couch.
While I scrubbed toilet water off Siren, the Grape amused himself by repeatedly crashing his ride on Tigger plane into the one item of antique furniture R. actually cares about.
"I crash! I crash AGAIN!" he yelled merrily.
Did I rush to stop him? No. Because I didn't want him taking advantage of my indisposed state to point the Tigger plane down the stairs like some kind of crazed toddler kamikaze.
I also knew that if Siren the Cat escaped the bath midstream, I'd never get her soaped up feline form out from under the bed.
This all happened before 7:45 a.m. The Grape eventually tired of crashing his aircraft and asked if he could stand in the toilet. No. "That's very yucky," I reminded him sternly, while thinking, Something else to worry about, now that he can climb out of bed on his own.
Climbing out of bed is the Grape's new favorite activity. He did it seventeen times yesterday, during the two-hour screaming, hysterical exorcism formerly known as his nap.
The first time he bailed from bed, I thought I'd outsmart him. I scoured the city for a toddler size sleep sack and zipped him in, thinking if his legs are bundled together he can't get over the rail.
The little Houdini squirmed out of the sleep sack - without undoing the zipper - in under three minutes. Child's play, as they say. He then carried it out of his bedroom and presented it to me like a cat showing off a fresh kill.
By the time R. returned from work, my non-napping escape artist had devolved into a stumbling, weepy, hunger striking mess. One who couldn't go down for the night for at least another two hours, which feels more like ten in overtired kid time. And I had made it through exactly one sentence of the hundred pages I had set aside to proofread during the Grape's nap.
I poured myself a generous glass of wine and looked on the bright side: I have another couple of weeks before The K Street Affair has to be absolutely done. We got through another day with no visits to either the human or animal ER. And Siren the Cat smells pleasantly like Johnson's baby shampoo - all the better for when she stands in the corner and meows at the walls.
"Why does she do that?" the Grape asked last night.
"Because she's old and crazy."
"No. Not like Mamma."
At least I hope not.